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股票与加密货币交易平台Robinhood也要上市了?

全新的互联网金融模式国际资讯

股票与加密货币交易平台Robinhood也要上市了?

现已估值56亿美元,零手续费股票和加密货币交易App Robinhood正在开始准备上市。就在一年半以前,这家公司还保持着神秘低调。但是却在2017年4月份完成了1.1亿美元大额C轮融资,估值也攀升到了13亿美元,而在一年后又完成了由俄罗斯公司DST Global领投的3.63亿美元D轮融资。再加上该公司的保证金交易服务Robinhood Gold的高级订阅服务实现了大幅度增长,这家创业公司现在拥有了强大的火力和收入来源,可以在华尔街交易所登场了。

Robinhood CEO Baiju Bhatt昨日在TechCrunch Disrupt SF峰会上进行了对话,他透露,他的公司正走在IPO的道路上,并开始物色首席财务官。它还在接受美国证券交易委员会、FINRA及其证券团队的持续审计,以确保所有的事情都处于正轨。

首席财务官的招聘将会帮助这家成立5年的硅谷创业公司推销自己,成为E*Trade和传统股票经纪人的廉价且年轻的替代选择。他们还必须让潜在投资者相信,尽管加密货币的价格正处于低迷期,但他们公司所提供的比Coinbase等竞争对手更底的交易成本,是一个获取用户的强大工具。

Robinhood目前拥有500万用户使用它们的App来跟踪、购买和出售股票、期权、ETF、美国存托凭证国际公司的收据和加密货币,如比特币和以太坊。这个用户数量是其竞争对手E*Trade的两倍,但E*Trade拥有4000名员工,而Robinhood仅有250名。

这家创业公司迄今已从Andreessen Horowitz、凯鹏华盈、红杉资本和谷歌的Capital G等知名投资者那里筹集了5.39亿美元的资金,这使其能够在竞争对手做出反应之前迅速推出产品。该公司估值的迅速上升可能会影响到一些创始人的头脑,或者在压力下压碎他们,但Bhatt提到了他与联合CEOVlad Tenev的“友谊”,这让他保持了理智。

这家创业公司有三个主要的变现渠道。

首先,它能从用户的Robinhood账户中赚取利息。

其次,它向股票交易所出售订单流,以满足其交易者的流动性。

此外,该公司还出售Robinhood Gold订阅服务,包括从每月10美元获得2000美元额外购买能力,到每月200美元获得50000美元保证金交易,每月收费为200美元,还有年利率5%的借贷费用。今年早些时候,Robinhood Gold的用户数量增长了17个百分点,这显示了免费提供交易然后对额外服务收费的发展潜力。

但随着其他创业公司和老牌企业的发展,Robinhood也面临着新的竞争。欧洲银行应用Revolut正在建立一个无佣金的股票交易平台,而Y Combinator的创业公司Titan刚刚推出了一款应用,可以让你购买一个经过管理的顶级股票投资组合。金融巨头摩根大通现在为客户提供100种免费交易,旨在避免被Robinhood削弱市场。

在加密货币方面,竞争对手Coinbase的人气继续上升,尽管其交易费用为1.4%至4%。Coinbase正在迅速扩大其产品供应,这两家金融科技创业公司注定会继续发生冲突。Robinhood还可能受到加密货币市场低迷的影响,这可能会阻止主流公众将现金投入代币中,因为他们看到了人们因比特币和以太坊今年的价格暴跌而失去了自己的财富。

此外,还存在安全漏洞风险,这可能会影响Robinhood的品牌。与此同时,这家创业公司同时使用人力和第三方软件系统来缓解其加密货币聊天室,以确保拉高出货情况不会泛滥成灾。Bhatt说,他为让加密货币变得更容易获取而感到自豪,不过他并没有说他认为价格暴跌是他的责任,价格暴跌让Robinhood的许多用户都蒙受了损失。

从根本上说,Robinhood会利用软件,让普通但昂贵的股票交易行为变得更便宜,更容易被更广泛的受众所接受。传统的银行和经纪商对办公室和分支机构、交易主管和电视广告都有很大的成本。Robinhood通过一个精简的工程团队和病毒式App,成功地改变了传统模式。一旦它找到了首席财务官,将使它更高效并带来更多增长。

Now valued at $5.6 billion, zero-fee stock trading app and cryptocurrency exchange Robinhood is starting preparations to go public. Just a year and a half ago, it was still largely under the radar. But then it raised a $110 million Series C at a $1.3 billion valuation in April 2017 and then just a year later scored a $363 million Series D, both led by Russian firm DST Global. Combined with the growth of its premium subscription for trading on margin called Robinhood  Gold, the startup now has the firepower and revenue to make a viable Wall Street debut.

Today during Robinhood CEO Baiju Bhatt’s  talk at TechCrunch Disrupt SF, he revealed that his company is on the path to an IPO and has begun its search for a chief financial officer. It’s also undergoing constant audits from the SEC, FINRA and its security team to make sure everything is kosher and locked up tight.

The CFO hire could help the five-year-old Silicon Valley startup pitch itself as the cheaper youthful alternative to E*Trade and traditional stock brokers. They’d also have to convince potential investors that even though cryptocurrency prices are in a downturn, allowing people to trade them for cheaper than competitors like Coinbase is a powerful user acquisition funnel.

Robinhood now has 5 million customers tracking, buying and selling stocks, options, ETFs, American depositary slips receipts of international companies and cryptos like Bitcoin and Ethereum. That’s twice as many customers as its incumbent competitor E*Trade despite it having 4,000 employees compared to Robinhood’s 250.

The startup has raised a total of $539 million to date from prestigious investors like Andreessen Horowitz, Kleiner Perkins, Sequoia and Google’s Capital G, allowing it to rapidly roll out products before its rivals can react. This rapid rise in valuation can go to some founders’ heads, or crush them under the pressure, but Bhatt cited “friendship” with his co-CEO Vlad Tenev as what keeps him sane.

The startup has three main monetization streams. First, it earns interest on money users keep in their Robinhood account. Second, it sells order flow to stock exchanges that want more liquidity for their traders. And it sells Robinhood Gold subscriptions which range from $10 per month for $2,000 in extra buying power to $200 per month for $50,000 in margin trading, with a 5 percent APR charged for borrowing over that. Gold was growing its subscriber count at 17 percent per month earlier this year, showing the potential of giving trades away for free and then charging for extra services.

But Robinhood is also encountering renewed competition as both startups and incumbents wise up. European banking app Revolut is building a commission-free stock trading, and Y Combinator startup Titan just launched its app that lets you buy into a  managed portfolio of top stocks. Finance giant JP Morgan now gives customers 100 free trades in hopes of not being undercut by Robinhood.

Over on the crypto side, Coinbase continues to grow in popularity despite its 1.4 percent to 4 percent fees on trades. It’s rapidly expanding its product offering and the two fintech startups are destined to keep clashing. Robinhood may also be suffering from the crypto downturn, which is likely dissuading the mainstream public from dumping cash into tokens after seeing people lose fortunes as Bitcoin and Ethereum’s prices tumbled this year.

There’s also the persistent risk of a security breach that could tank Robinhood’s brand. Meanwhile, the startup uses both human and third-party software-based systems to moderate its crypto chat rooms to make sure pump and dump schemes aren’t running rampant. Bhatt says he’s proud of making cryptocurrency more accessible, though he didn’t say he felt responsible for prices plummeting, which could mean many of Robinhood Crypto’s users have lost money.

Fundamentally, Robinhood is using software to make the common but expensive behavior of stock trading much cheaper and more accessible to a wider audience. Traditional banks and brokers have big costs for offices and branches, trading execs and TV commercials. Robinhood has managed to replace much of that with a lean engineering team and viral app that grows itself. Once it finds its CFO, that could give it an efficiency and growth rate that has Wall Street seeing green.


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